Friday, August 5, 2011

We are back with a vengeance!

Missed last month's meeting, so I think there's going to be a lot to catch up on.  Thanks to the guys at Water Gap Woodturners for the support during some tough days.

The meeting actually was preceded my an event.  Not just any event, either, but a free wood event.  One of the greatest benefits of being in the Water Gap Woodturners is our membership resources.  Ed Brannon connected us with the Park, and Dick Plog volunteered to trailer his Woodmizer bandsaw mill to cut the free walnut logs dropped off by the Park.

Now that the log has been loaded on the mill, life gets easier! Dick is operating the mill with a tremendous amount of supervision...I think Peter is from OSHA?

Now that the log has been loaded on the mill, life gets easier! Dick is operating the mill with a tremendous amount of supervision...I think Peter is from OSHA?
Did I say free wood? They look like they are working pretty hard for it? This is when I showed up, and backed my truck under that slab...Thanks guys! (Kidding, sorta...)

After everyone grabbed their share of wood, we went inside to hold the normal meeting.  Our first order of business was to have elections.  Ed Brannon and Mike Gurodis were unanimously elected president and vice president.  Jim Matthews  retained the Treasurer role, and I am still blogger/secretary/Director of Programs.  (I am Steven Antonucci, if you didn't know)

After the elections, which were hotly contested (nobody wanted to run...), we went to our first club challenge.  The Grey Towers black locust pieces were due for the exhibit that Ed Brannon set up with Grey Towers.  There were many good looking bowls, and only a few lathes broken during the process.

We also held our second drawing for tool donated by Doug Thompson.  Harvey Fein was the winner of a 1/2 V shaped bowl gouge in 10V steel and Doug's custom shot filled handles.  Doug is also making 15V steel tools now for just a few extra dollars.  15V steel has 2x the carbides compared to 10V, and it's effectiveness was proven out by turning partially dry black locust all night without sharpening.  Doug had sent me a 1/2 15V bowl gouge to test drive, and it is rapidly becoming a go to tool.  (

Harvey Fein thinks "moving the meeting to Thursday worked out great for me!" 

 Ed and Mike- our new leadership

After the Grey Towers Show and Tell, we had a surprise hands on demo session.  Mike Hunter had contacted me about connecting with Peters Valley, and we were asked to look at some of his carbide hollowing tools.  Mike sent a small ornament set and a Hunter #5, and I found some time to make beefwood (I think) handles for the tools.  They were donated to the Peters Valley/Water Gap Woodturners cause, and quickly checked out of the library by anxious members who wanted to try them out.  (

The tools are somewhat unique in that they use a replacable carbide cutter and cannot be sharpened. The cutter is actually rotated to a fresh spot when it gets dull, and the cutter gets replaced when it is dull all around. Because they are nano-carbides, they get sharpened to a fine, polished edge that lasts for a very long time. No sharpening.

After a five minute demo by Steve, we asked for volunteers to step up and take a try.  There is a short learning curve and then even a novice can pick up the tools pretty rapidly.  We had some of the black locust that broke Gary's lathe to practice on, and we cut it without issues to a fine finish.  Jim Matthews, Peter Thome, Don French, Izzy Padula, Harvey Fein, Ed Brannon all took turns making cuts, and with a few small corrections, were all doing well in a few minutes.

Jim gets a little adjustment from Steve

In the end, Jim and Don both checked out the tools from the library and will bring something that they made to the next meeting.  We're going to be sending surprises to Mike Hunter for supporting Peters Valley and the Water Gap Woodturners as a way of saying thanks (I made him a couple of things...)

The meeting adjourned with a quick clean-up (Thanks Jim, Don, Izzy) around 9:30.  Happy to take suggestions for next months topic?